CD2 is putting the lie to a National Popular Vote talking point.
The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, which Rhode Island has ill-advisedly joined, requires that, whenever enough states have joined to control the Electoral College outcome for the President of the United States, all participating states must give their Electoral College votes to whichever candidate won the most individual votes nationally, no matter what their own citizens wanted. You don’t have to be a political analyst to suspect that Ocean State Democrats assume their party’s current advantage in Rhode Island and urban areas nationally will be eternal so that the national popular vote will only ever differ from the Electoral College in their favor.
Of course, they’d never make the argument in those terms, so they did things like insist the national popular vote would make Rhode Island more relevant to politicians, leading them actually to campaign here. In reality, the Electoral College basically doubles Rhode Island’s importance in presidential elections, so the compact would actually cut our relevance in half.
What makes us irrelevant to national politics is that we’re small, yes, but also that we’re the owned property of a particular party. The solution would be to reform the many systemic factors that give insider Democrats insurmountable advantages. For evidence, consider this tweet and article from Amanda Milkovitz of the Boston Globe:
Politics is like the economy in this regard. When people have competitive options, things go better. It therefore behooves us to err in favor of competition in the structure of our laws and civic culture. But as with businesspeople, politicians don’t like uncertainty and risk, so when they can, they’ll tilt things in their favor.
Featured image by Josh Carter on Unsplash.